Local optometrist retires after 42 years of service

By Susan Hardee Steger
March 7, 2021


After over 41 years as an optometrist, Dr.  John W. McClane III,saw his last patient on February 25  and is now off to a new life as a retiree.  After graduating from the University of Florida,  McClane decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and began his studies at the Illinois College of Optometry.  Upon graduation, he came back to Fernandina Beach to join the practice of McClane and McClane. Over the years,  he and his father have tended to generations of local families.

As Fernandina grew, so did the business. Eventually, McClane welcomed the Stubit brothers who like McClane, grew up in Fernandina.  Later Dr. Russell Stackhouse M.D.,  an ophthalmologist expanded the offerings of the optometry group to include cataract and LASIK surgery.

McClane served as president of the Florida Optometric Association and was honored as Florida’s Optometrist of the Decade in 1998.

Pictured: Dr Tony Stubits, Steve Stubits, Dr. Stackhouse, and Dr. McClane





When Dr John McClane jr. opened his business in Fernandina, the late Mary Agnes White was his first patient. Pictured are glasses of the era and handwritten patient records. (Note: No social security numbers, or insurance information.)


These glasses, dated 1949, before McClane the III was born,, belonged to Mrs. W.T. Haile. She and her husband once owned the Fairbanks House.  When Fernandina was desperate for housing as  Rayonier and Container Corporation came to town, the Hailes rented rooms to the workers.


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